When you buy an SUV, you buy it for the road presence, people carrying capacity and the off-road capabilities which are the basic purposes of an SUV. And the pride of ownership is just another aspect which comes factory-fitted.
SUVs apart, there is a whole new segment of SUVs which has emerged, the compact SUVs, which are like hatches with a rougher body and capabilities. Almost all the SUVs out there barring the ones from the Germans are 7-seaters.
Coming to the compact SUVs, Quanto brought in 7 seats (5+2 to be precise), even though not the most comfortable third row of jump seats but fairly acceptable for children at least. When it came to the Duster, it was essentially a 5-seater but it brought in last row seating as dealer accessories.
Ford is going to bring in its much hyped Ford EcoSport early next year which is based on their global B-Platform which also has the new Fiesta based on it. It has been already caught a few times in India.
A new speculation has emerged from Brazilian media that Ford is planning a new 7-seater variant of their EcoSport which makes quite a lot of sense for markets like India. We expect that the addition of 3rd row of seats would definitely force Ford to increase the car’s wheelbase.
That might mean an increase in its length and considering that the regular EcoSport would sit just at the fence of 4 meters, the 7-seater is expected to breach that. As soon as it goes over that figure, it would come in the next slab of cars which are not small cars and hence an expected price increase (due to increased excise). This is not new, we have seen this with international next-gen Hyundai Santa Fe which is also India bound.
After the spiraling success of Duster and Quanto, EcoSport is said to be the next big thing in India. Considering that Indian’s would definitely love an extra row of seats, Ford might keep an ace up its sleeves after launching the regular 5-seater version sometime in Feb-March 2013.
EcoSport in India would be launched with the 1.0L EcoBoost turbo petrol engine which will make its Indian debut and the 1.5L petrol and diesel mills straight from the new Fiesta. Ford has already launched the EcoSport in Brazil, China and a few other markets as we await our turn. Let us see what has Ford in store for us.
Meanwhile, would you prefer a 7-seater EcoSport over the regular one, at the first place?